It’s been a year since the notorious Target data breach, and there have been several more since then. If you’re worried about your company’s online security, here are four important tips that can be implemented right now without breaking the bank:
- Enable two-factor authentication (2FA). This relatively simple approach takes security a step beyond usernames and passwords, employing multi-digit authentication codes or pass phrases to gain access to specific documents or programs. Some programs, like Google’s Authenticator, use special codes sent to your mobile phone to provide that added layer. There are other services as well, or you may choose to have your IT manager implement a system unique to your company.
- Consider online security a business problem rather than strictly an IT issue. To effectively combat hacking threats, all levels of business need to be brought in to address the problem. Even if you use a cloud service with a stellar reputation for security, that still doesn’t mean you can just forget about cybersecurity risks. Employ the same actions to cybersecurity as you do in other aspects of your business, identifying risks and developing responsive solutions — and do it on a regular basis.
- Dedicate one computer to sensitive functions like financial transactions. By using just one computer (or several, depending on your needs) only for sensitive data transmission, you can more easily monitor what information potential hackers have access to. Make sure employees know not to use that computer for any other functions to increase security.
- Restrict the data that’s on the network. If your company handles sensitive data, is there a reason that data needs to be on systems that are connected to the Internet? If not, keeping it on computers that aren’t network-enabled prevents hackers from ever gaining access to it.
Most importantly, make cybersecurity a part of your regular conversations during meetings with staff, company executives and board members. The more you talk about your cybersecurity risks, the more likely you are to prevent hacking and find real solutions that work.